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tv   [untitled]    January 30, 2017 1:26pm-1:36pm EST

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might help or hinder solutions to conflict in the region. we'll have more live programming as well later on c-span3 at 5:30 we'll be hearing from former secretary of state madeleine albright about the importance of american leadership and president trump's executive order on refugees and immigrants, live at 5:30 eastern here on c-span3. and at 6:30, white house press secretary sean spicer will join one of his predecessors, ari fleischer, and white house correspondents to talk about media coverage of president trump live at 6:30. on capitol hill the senate gavels in at 3:00 eastern and will take up the nomination of rex tillerson to be secretary of state at 5:00 a procedural vote on that expected at 5:30. and you can always watch live coverage of the senate over on c-span2. and tomorrow morning, live at 9:30, the senate judiciary committee will meet to vote on the nomination of senator jeff sessions to be the next attorney general. the senate has not yet announced a time for confirmation vote by
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the full senate. while we're in this break, the discussion on iran, here is some of our c-span interview s with new members of congress. we'll return to the forum as soon as it resumes. congressman rubin representing nevada's 4th district, democrat. you're not new to politics. how have you been serving for the state? >> this is actually -- i'm a freshman to the house of representatives but not a freshman to politics. this is now my tenth year in the elected office. i started my political career when i was actually -- in 1998 as a volunteer for senator reid's re-election campaign. as you may recall, this is the race that senator reid won by 428 votes. and i got involved in politics, you know, not with the eventual role to run for office, but to give back and to get a little bit of extra credit in high school. and, you know, never did i
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imagine that 18-year-old kid who was out there knocking on doors for senator reid would go on to become a member of congress. but, you know, one thing led to another, i started volunteering, and then that led to a job, a campaign job, the campaign job led to a job as a rep to senator reid and that led to me running for office. and here i am. but, it has been an honor and privilege. honestly to just be sitting here, in this office, and be able to serve in congress is one of the biggest honors that anybody can ever have. and, you know, it is a big responsibility. you're representing 700,000 people and they expect you to come here and get the job done and so that's what i want to do. >> what did you focus on in the state assembly and state senate? >> i want to continue that same work that i did in the state legislature but here in congress. number one, making college more affordable. the state legislature i created the first ever grants for low income students to go to college. i teamed up with the republican,
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assistant and majority leader, and we created the first ever grants for low income students. we never had grants for low income students. nevada was behind in higher education funding, and so that was one of the issues i tackled. another one that -- want to continue working on here in congress is equal pay for equal work for women. i co-sponsored a bill, similar bill in congress, in legislature, hopefully here in congress we can tackle the same issue, raising the minimum wage, you know, nevada is at 8:25. but if you're working full time. and in nevada and working 40 hours a week, working below the poverty level, we live in the greatest country on planet earth, you should be able to work here full time and be able to make a livable wage, and some of the other issues are protecting social security and medicare, you know, things we can only tackle here in congress, immigration reform, you know, i'm an immigrant myself. i was born in mexico. i came here to this country when
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i was 8 years old, i couldn't speak a word of english and now i'm a member of congress. my story is the embodiment of the american dream. you work hard, you can accomplish anything. and like my family, there is many immigrant families out there who are looking for that opportunity. >> what about coming here as an 8-year-old, not being able to speak english, resonates with you today? >> look, i have -- i bring a different perspective, right. i still remember living in mexico. i remember playing on the streets of mexico when i -- playing soccer, you know in the streets that weren't even -- wasn't even pavement. and to be able to sit here in this building that has so much history, literally the office right next door is john f. kennedy's freshman office, it is a big honor. and, you know, when you lived through poverty, when you've been on minimum wage, when you've lost a home, you know, i had a home foreclosed a few
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years ago, when you see your mom struggling to make ends meet, working as a housekeeper, or your father working as a farm worker in the fields of california just to try to make ends meet, you know, you bring a different perspective to congress. i'm not rich. my parents are not former politicians. they're not wealthy, you know, we don't come from a wealthy family, my parents are hard working people. and you name the problem that americans are going through right now, and we have gone through it. minimum wage, losing a home, being unemployed, i've been unemployed before and i know it is one of those -- the demoralizing -- that feeling that you feel helpless, that you can't help your family, so, again, those are issues that americans are going through right now and those are issues we have to tackle here. being here is not just sitting here and looking pretty and giving speeches on the floor. it is actually sitting down and talking to your colleagues and coming to a compromise wherever there is room for compromise and
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coming up with solutions to the problems that americans are facing today. >> without the typical ways to win a house seat, connections, money, some of the ways that folks win a house seat, how are you able to win and represent nevada. >> you know, we did it the old-fashioned way, you knock on doors. we were in an eight way primary. when i first announced i was first person to announce back in march of 2015, so it has been almost two years since i announced my candidacy, and the only reason i ran for this seat is because steven horseford, the former congressman in this area, in this district, lost his re-election. and then a republican ended up winning the seat, crescent hardy. steven horseford decided not to run again. so i decided to challenge the gentleman who beat him. so i was the first person out the gate, the first democrat to announce and then by the time filing came around, seven other democrats had announced their
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candidacy, and i knew that it was going to be a tough race. that i wasn't, you know, i didn't have money to put in for my own pocket. i'm not a multimillionaire. my name and i.d. was very low. even as a state senator, many people don't know who their state senator is. we knocked on doors. we raised money literally dollar by dollar. and, you know, we ended up getting the endorsement, which was very significant, the culinary union is one of the largest unions in the country and the largest in nevada, very influential. my mother has been a 23-year member of the culinary union. and then that led to getting senator reid's endorsement, and, look, senator reid has been a powerhouse for nevada. and not just for democrats, but championing nevada issues for many, many years here in congress. and it is going to be a big loss for us to -- for him to retire. but we got his endorsement and that helped us get the backing
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and the credibility that we needed and then on top of that, you know, i knocked on 6,000 doors just the old-fashioned way with tennis shoes and shorts and jeans and t-shirt. and, look, our message resonated with the people and the primary. then we shifted over to the general and won the general. but, again, one of most expensive races in the country. and so, again, for me to be here, it is a huge honor and i tell people, i'm happy to be here, just serving. >> the first latino, right to represent the state of nevada and the house of representatives. >> correct, yes. >> what does that mean for you, to you? >> look, i wasn't running to be, you know, or to make history, or to be first. i'm running to make sure that, you know, i'm not the only one that other kids who are growing up just like me in lower income families, you know, whose parents might be a housekeeper or farm worker know that they too can be a member of congress. that they too can, you know, run
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for a public office without being rich and politically connected and still be able to serve. because that's what public office is about. we should -- everybody should have an opportunity, if they want to run, they should have an equal opportunity to run. and right now you have a congress who pretty much -- that is pretty much controlled by multimillionaires and corporations, right? you have all the super pacs investing, you know, billions of dollars in campaigns trying to buy seats. i did it the old-fashioned way. and the support i got was union workers, representing the working class people of the country and so, you know, it is an honor to be the first latino to serve in the house of representatives from nevada. but i think more importantly now another young latino, latina, from nevada can say, you know what, i can be rubin kihuen. some day we might have the first latino


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